tag: biological soil crust

Microbial transport and soil integrity in drylands

Dryland soils are particularly vulnerable to erosion because of low plant cover and low organic matter which is linked with water availability and biological constraints. It is increasingly recognised that dryland soils can be managed to minimise erosion, which has benefits such as increasing soil fertility, carbon storage, and prevention …

Reproducible research

The statistical analyses for our recent paper on the bacterial communities of biological soil crusts in the Kalahari can be fully examined and reproduced via code and data I have deposited on GitHub.The analysis relies heavily on the phyloseq package for R. The phyloseq paper and associated documentation were really an inspiration, and provided …

Niche partitioning of bacterial communities in biological crusts and soils under grasses, shrubs and trees in the Kalahari

The Kalahari of southern Africa is characterised by sparse vegetation interspersed with microbe-dominated biological soil crusts (BSC) which deliver a range of ecosystem services including soil stabilisation and carbon fixation. We characterised the bacterial communities of BSCs (0–1 cm depth) and the subsurface soil (1–2 cm depth) in an area typical of …

Microbial community composition of biological soil crusts and subsoil in the Kalahari

The Kalahari of southern Africa is characterised by sparse vegetation interspersed with biological soil crusts which deliver a range of ecosystem services including soil stabilisation and carbon fixation. The crusts vary in morphology from barely aggregated sand grains, to strongly aggregated thick crusts with dark pigmentation. Crust morphology and development …

Bio-physical competition for pore space and the micro-environment in BSC covered Kalahari Sand soils: Modelling soil thermal, hydraulic and gas efflux behaviour

Soil pore and particle matrices both facilitate and constrain soil-atmosphere exchange of heat, moisture and gas. Further, in soils covered by Biological Soil Crusts (BSCs), soil structure differs in the BSC (<1cm) and near surface layers. Soil-atmosphere gas exchange occurs primarily by diffusion, moisture flow by capillarity and hydrostatic pressure, …